Endocrine disease
Endocrine diseases are disorders of the endocrine system
Endocrine system
In physiology, the endocrine system is a system of glands, each of which secretes a type of hormone directly into the bloodstream to regulate the body. The endocrine system is in contrast to the exocrine system, which secretes its chemicals using ducts. It derives from the Greek words "endo"...

. The branch of medicine
Medicine is the science and art of healing. It encompasses a variety of health care practices evolved to maintain and restore health by the prevention and treatment of illness....

 associated with endocrine disorders is known as endocrinology
Endocrinology is a branch of biology and medicine dealing with the endocrine system, its diseases, and its specific secretions called hormones, the integration of developmental events such as proliferation, growth, and differentiation and the coordination of...


Types of endocrine disease

Broadly speaking, endocrine disorders may be subdivided into three groups:
  1. Endocrine gland hyposecretion (leading to hormone deficiency)
  2. Endocrine gland hypersecretion (leading to hormone excess)
  3. Tumours (benign or malignant) of endocrine glands

Endocrine disorders are often quite complex, involving a mixed picture of hyposecretion and hypersecretion because of the feedback mechanisms involved in the endocrine system. For example, most forms of hyperthyroidism
Hyperthyroidism is the term for overactive tissue within the thyroid gland causing an overproduction of thyroid hormones . Hyperthyroidism is thus a cause of thyrotoxicosis, the clinical condition of increased thyroid hormones in the blood. Hyperthyroidism and thyrotoxicosis are not synonymous...

 are associated with an excess of thyroid hormone
Thyroid hormone
The thyroid hormones, thyroxine and triiodothyronine , are tyrosine-based hormones produced by the thyroid gland primarily responsible for regulation of metabolism. An important component in the synthesis of thyroid hormones is iodine. The major form of thyroid hormone in the blood is thyroxine ,...

 and a low level of thyroid stimulating hormone.

Adrenal disorders

  • Adrenal insufficiency
    Adrenal insufficiency
    Adrenal insufficiency is a condition in which the adrenal glands, located above the kidneys, do not produce adequate amounts of steroid hormones , primarily cortisol, but may also include impaired aldosterone production which regulates sodium, potassium and water retention...

    • Addison's disease
      Addison's disease
      Addison’s disease is a rare, chronic endocrine disorder in which the adrenal glands do not produce sufficient steroid hormones...

    • Mineralocorticoid deficiency
      • Diabetes

  • Adrenal hormone excess
    • Conn's syndrome
      Conn's syndrome
      Primary aldosteronism, also known as primary hyperaldosteronism, is characterized by the overproduction of the mineralocorticoid hormone aldosterone by the adrenal glands., when not a result of excessive renin secretion. Aldosterone causes increase in sodium and water retention and potassium...

    • Cushing's syndrome
      Cushing's syndrome
      Cushing's syndrome is a hormone disorder caused by high levels of cortisol in the blood. This can be caused by taking glucocorticoid drugs, or by tumors that produce cortisol or adrenocorticotropic hormone or CRH...

    • GRA
      GRA could refer to:* Gemological Rating Laboratory of America, Inc.* Goffstown Residents Association,* Glucocorticoid remediable aldosteronism, autosomal dominant disorder in which the increase in aldosterone secretion medicine...

      /Glucocorticoid remediable aldosteronism
      Glucocorticoid remediable aldosteronism
      Glucocorticoid remediable aldosteronism is an autosomal dominant disorder in which the increase in aldosterone secretion produced by ACTH is no longer transient.It is a cause of primary hyperaldosteronism.-Normal Physiology:...

    • Pheochromocytoma
      A pheochromocytoma or phaeochromocytoma is a neuroendocrine tumor of the medulla of the adrenal glands , or extra-adrenal chromaffin tissue that failed to involute after birth and secretes excessive amounts of catecholamines, usually noradrenaline , and adrenaline to a lesser extent...

  • Congenital adrenal hyperplasia
    Congenital adrenal hyperplasia
    Congenital adrenal hyperplasia refers to any of several autosomal recessive diseases resulting from mutations of genes for enzymes mediating the biochemical steps of production of cortisol from cholesterol by the adrenal glands ....

     (adrenogenital syndrome)
  • Adrenocortical carcinoma
    Adrenocortical carcinoma
    Adrenocortical carcinoma, also adrenal cortical carcinoma and adrenal cortex cancer, is an aggressive cancer originating in the cortex of the adrenal gland. Adrenocortical carcinoma is a rare tumor, with incidence of 1-2 per million population annually...

Glucose homeostasis disorders

  • Diabetes mellitus
    Diabetes mellitus
    Diabetes mellitus, often simply referred to as diabetes, is a group of metabolic diseases in which a person has high blood sugar, either because the body does not produce enough insulin, or because cells do not respond to the insulin that is produced...

    • Type 1 Diabetes
      Diabetes mellitus type 1
      Diabetes mellitus type 1 is a form of diabetes mellitus that results from autoimmune destruction of insulin-producing beta cells of the pancreas. The subsequent lack of insulin leads to increased blood and urine glucose...

    • Type 2 Diabetes
      Diabetes mellitus type 2
      Diabetes mellitus type 2formerly non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus or adult-onset diabetesis a metabolic disorder that is characterized by high blood glucose in the context of insulin resistance and relative insulin deficiency. Diabetes is often initially managed by increasing exercise and...

    • Gestational Diabetes
      Gestational diabetes
      Gestational diabetes is a condition in which women without previously diagnosed diabetes exhibit high blood glucose levels during pregnancy . It is widely accepted as a disease only in the United States, there is some question whether the condition is natural during pregnancy...

    • Mature Onset Diabetes of the Young

  • Hypoglycemia
    Hypoglycemia or hypoglycæmia is the medical term for a state produced by a lower than normal level of blood glucose. The term literally means "under-sweet blood"...

    • Idiopathic hypoglycemia
      Idiopathic hypoglycemia
      Idiopathic hypoglycemia is, literally, a medical condition in which the glucose level in the blood is abnormally low due to an undeterminable cause. This is considered an incomplete and unsatisfactory diagnosis by physicians and is rarely used by endocrinologists, as it implies an unfinished...

    • Insulinoma
      An insulinoma is a tumour of the pancreas that is derived from beta cells and secretes insulin.Beta cells secrete insulin in response to increases in blood glucose. The resulting increase in insulin acts to lower blood glucose back to normal levels at which point further secretion of insulin is...

  • Glucagonoma
    A glucagonoma is a rare tumor of the alpha cells of the pancreas that results in up to a 1000-fold overproduction of the hormone glucagon. Alpha cell tumors are commonly associated with glucagonoma syndrome, though similar symptoms are present in cases of pseudoglucagonoma syndrome in the absence...

  • Thyroiditis
    Thyroiditis is the inflammation of the thyroid gland. The thyroid gland is located on the front of the neck below the laryngeal prominence, and makes hormones that control metabolism.-Classification:...

    • Hashimoto's thyroiditis
      Hashimoto's thyroiditis
      Hashimoto's thyroiditis or chronic lymphocytic thyroiditis is an autoimmune disease in which the thyroid gland is gradually destroyed by a variety of cell- and antibody-mediated immune processes. It was the first disease to be recognized as an autoimmune disease...

  • Thyroid cancer
    Thyroid cancer
    Thyroid neoplasm is a neoplasm or tumor of the thyroid. It can be a benign tumor such as thyroid adenoma, or it can be a malignant neoplasm , such as papillary, follicular, medullary or anaplastic thyroid cancer. Most patients are 25 to 65 years of age when first diagnosed; women are more affected...

Calcium homeostasis disorders and Metabolic bone disease

  • Parathyroid gland
    Parathyroid gland
    The parathyroid glands are small endocrine glands in the neck that produce parathyroid hormone. Humans usually have four parathyroid glands, which are usually located on the rear surface of the thyroid gland, or, in rare cases, within the thyroid gland itself or in the chest...

    • Primary hyperparathyroidism
      Primary hyperparathyroidism
      Primary hyperparathyroidism causes hypercalcemia through the excessive secretion of parathyroid hormone , usually by an adenoma of the parathyroid glands.-Epidemiology:...

    • Secondary hyperparathyroidism
      Secondary hyperparathyroidism
      Secondary hyperparathyroidism refers to the excessive secretion of parathyroid hormone by the parathyroid glands in response to hypocalcemia and associated hypertrophy of the glands. This disorder is especially seen in patients with chronic renal failure...

    • Tertiary hyperparathyroidism
      Tertiary hyperparathyroidism
      Tertiary hyperparathyroidism is a state of excessive secretion of parathyroid hormone after a long period of secondary hyperparathyroidism and resulting hypercalcemia...

    • Hypoparathyroidism
      Hypoparathyroidism is decreased function of the parathyroid glands with under production of parathyroid hormone. This can lead to low levels of calcium in the blood, often causing cramping and twitching of muscles or tetany , and several other symptoms...

      • Pseudohypoparathyroidism
        Pseudohypoparathyroidism is a condition associated primarily with resistance to the parathyroid hormone. Patients have a low serum calcium and high phosphate, but the parathyroid hormone level is actually appropriately high...

  • Osteoporosis
    Osteoporosis is a disease of bones that leads to an increased risk of fracture. In osteoporosis the bone mineral density is reduced, bone microarchitecture is deteriorating, and the amount and variety of proteins in bone is altered...

  • Osteitis deformans (Paget's disease of bone)
  • Rickets
    Rickets is a softening of bones in children due to deficiency or impaired metabolism of vitamin D, magnesium , phosphorus or calcium, potentially leading to fractures and deformity. Rickets is among the most frequent childhood diseases in many developing countries...

     and osteomalacia
    Osteomalacia is the softening of the bones caused by defective bone mineralization secondary to inadequate amounts of available phosphorus and calcium, or because of overactive resorption of calcium from the bone as a result of hyperparathyroidism...

Anterior pituitary

  • Hypopituitarism
    Hypopituitarism is the decreased secretion of one or more of the eight hormones normally produced by the pituitary gland at the base of the brain...

     (or Panhypopituitarism
    Hypopituitarism is the decreased secretion of one or more of the eight hormones normally produced by the pituitary gland at the base of the brain...


  • Pituitary tumors
    • Pituitary adenoma
      Pituitary adenoma
      Pituitary adenomas are tumors that occur in the pituitary gland, and account for about 15% of intracranial neoplasms. Tumors which exceed 10 mm in size are defined as macroadenomas, and those smaller than 10 mm are referred to as microadenomas...

    • Prolactinoma
      A prolactinoma is a benign tumor of the pituitary gland that produces a hormone called prolactin. It is the most common type of pituitary tumor...

       (or Hyperprolactinemia)
    • Acromegaly
      Acromegaly is a syndrome that results when the anterior pituitary gland produces excess growth hormone after epiphyseal plate closure at puberty...

      , gigantism
      Gigantism, also known as giantism , is a condition characterized by excessive growth and height significantly above average...

    • Cushing's disease
      Cushing's disease
      Cushing's disease is a cause of Cushing's Syndrome characterised by increased secretion of adrenocorticotropic hormone from the anterior pituitary. This is most often as a result of a pituitary adenoma...

Sex hormone disorders

  • Disorders of sex development
    Disorders of sex development
    Disorders of sex development , sometimes referred to as disorders of sex differentiation, are medical terms referring to "congenital conditions in which development of chromosomal, gonadal, or anatomical sex is atypical." Lee et al...

     or intersex disorders
    • Hermaphroditism
    • Gonadal dysgenesis
      Gonadal dysgenesis
      Gonadal dysgenesis is a term used to describe multiple reproductive system development disorders. They are conditions of genetic origin. It is characterized by a progressive loss of primordial germ cells on the developing gonads of an embryo....

    • Androgen insensitivity syndrome
      Androgen insensitivity syndrome
      Androgen insensitivity syndrome is a condition that results in the partial or complete inability of the cell to respond to androgens. The unresponsiveness of the cell to the presence of androgenic hormones can impair or prevent the masculinization of male genitalia in the developing fetus, as...


  • Hypogonadism
    Hypogonadism is a medical term for decreased functional activity of the gonads. Low testosterone is caused by a decline or deficiency in gonadal production of testosterone in males...

     (Gonadotropin deficiency)
    • Inherited (genetic and chromosomal) disorders
      • Kallmann syndrome
        Kallmann syndrome
        Kallmann syndrome is a genetic disorder marked by anosmia and hypogonadism - the decreased functioning of the glands that produce sex hormones. Abnormalities in various genes may cause a defect in the hypothalamus, causing a deficiency of gonadotropin-releasing hormone ; this in turn causes...

      • Klinefelter syndrome
      • Turner syndrome
        Turner syndrome
        Turner syndrome or Ullrich-Turner syndrome encompasses several conditions in human females, of which monosomy X is most common. It is a chromosomal abnormality in which all or part of one of the sex chromosomes is absent...

    • Acquired disorders
      • Ovarian failure
        Premature ovarian failure
        Premature Ovarian Failure , also known as premature ovarian insufficiency, primary ovarian insufficiency , premature menopause, hypergonadotropic hypogonadism, is the loss of function of the ovaries before age 40...

         (also known as Premature Menopause)
      • Testicular failure
        Hypogonadism is a medical term for decreased functional activity of the gonads. Low testosterone is caused by a decline or deficiency in gonadal production of testosterone in males...

  • Disorders of Gender
    Gender is a range of characteristics used to distinguish between males and females, particularly in the cases of men and women and the masculine and feminine attributes assigned to them. Depending on the context, the discriminating characteristics vary from sex to social role to gender identity...

    • Gender identity disorder
      Gender identity disorder
      Gender identity disorder is the formal diagnosis used by psychologists and physicians to describe persons who experience significant gender dysphoria . It describes the symptoms related to transsexualism, as well as less severe manifestations of gender dysphoria...

  • Disorders of Puberty
    • Delayed puberty
      Delayed puberty
      Puberty is described as delayed puberty with exceptions when an organism has passed the usual age of onset of puberty with no physical or hormonal signs that it is beginning. Puberty may be delayed for several years and still occur normally, in which case it is considered constitutional delay, a...

    • Precocious puberty
      Precocious puberty
      As a medical term, precocious puberty describes puberty occurring at an unusually early age. In most of these children, the process is normal in every respect except the unusually early age, and simply represents a variation of normal development. In a minority of children, the early development is...

  • Menstrual function or fertility disorders
    • Amenorrhea
    • Polycystic ovary syndrome
      Polycystic ovary syndrome
      Polycystic ovary syndrome is one of the most common female endocrine disorders. PCOS is a complex, heterogeneous disorder of uncertain aetiology, but there is strong evidence that it can to a large degree be classified as a genetic disease....

Tumours of the endocrine glands not mentioned elsewhere

  • Multiple endocrine neoplasia
    Multiple endocrine neoplasia
    The term multiple endocrine neoplasia encompasses several distinct syndromes featuring tumors of endocrine glands, each with its own characteristic pattern. In some cases, the tumors are malignant, in others, benign...

    • MEN type 1
      Multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1
      Multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 or Wermer's syndrome is part of a group of disorders that affect the endocrine system.-Explanation:...

    • MEN type 2a
    • MEN type 2b
      Multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2b
      Multiple endocrine neoplasia type 3 is a genetic disease that causes multiple tumors on the mouth, eyes, and endocrine glands...

  • Carcinoid syndrome
    Carcinoid syndrome
    Carcinoid syndrome refers to the array of symptoms that occur secondary to carcinoid tumors. The syndrome includes flushing and diarrhea, and, less frequently, heart failure and bronchoconstriction...

See also separate organs

  • Autoimmune polyendocrine syndrome
    Autoimmune polyendocrine syndrome
    In medicine, autoimmune polyendocrine syndromes are a heterogeneous group of rare diseases characterised by autoimmune activity against more than one endocrine organs, although non-endocrine organs can be affected....

  • Incidentaloma
    In medicine, an incidentaloma is a tumor found by coincidence without clinical symptoms or suspicion. It is a common problem: up to 7% of all patients over 60 may harbor a benign growth, often of the adrenal gland, which is detected when diagnostic imaging is used for the analysis of unrelated...

     - an unexpected finding on diagnostic imaging, often of endocrine glands


Timme's syndrome is a historical term for pluriglandular disease ( disease involving a number of endocrine organs ) first described in 1919.

See also

External links

  • Overview at Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy
    Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy
    The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy, often called simply The Merck Manual, is the world's best-selling medical textbook. First published in 1899, it is now in its 19th edition.-Professional Edition:...

  • Endotext
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